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Confused wrote:

Hi, guys —

Let me give you some background information.

In early 2010, I was married in the Catholic Church. Unfortunately, the marriage only lasted five months. It was never properly consummated and there was much neglect towards the marriage on his part. We tried to make things work but it eventually led to a legal divorce.

I am now engaged to a Catholic man, who was civilly married and is now legally divorced.

We would like to be married in the Catholic Church, and we have loosely been told that my previous marriage could possibly be annulled.

My questions are:

  1. Is it possible to have my previous marriage annulled, and if so, how long would that take?
  2. When we have children, will we be able to baptize them in the Catholic Church?

Thank you for your time and I look forward to your response.



  { Is it possible to have my previous 5-month marriage annulled, and if so, how long would it take? }

Eric replied:

Dear Confused —

Only a tribunal can determine if your previous marriage was null. The determination of that, commonly called an annulment, could take a year or more. I advise you to talk to your local Catholic priest who can determine the particulars. I would encourage you to pursue an annulment since you certainly qualify to apply for one.

As to your second question, yes, absolutely, as long as you intend to raise the children Catholic.


Fr. Jonathan replied:

Dear Confused,

Yes, you can ask to have it declared null. By what you have said, it seems like a straightforward case but no one can judge that until reviewing the facts.

Every Tribunal is different, but the Tribunal I work with averages about a year and this, being a probable straightforward case would most likely be below that average.

The status of a couple's Marriage does not affect their right to have their children baptized as long as there is a well founded hope that the children will be brought up Catholic.

Fr. Jonathan

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